Tuesday, 25 December 2018

Christmas Day: Visiting and Visited: Heather Andrews

Luke 2.1-14

So the day dawns, awaited, dreaded… a woman screams in labour as new life is forced from the waters of the womb, and beached upon the blue-green world. 

GIFT.  Womb-darkness work done… Child – Son - Offered to the Earth… Gathered into loving arms, bathed and tended, welcomed and suckled.  Skin to skin, then swaddled into comforting closeness. 

Slowly the light rises, star hangs like a beacon over the Christ-child… the angel-song magnifies, throbs through the air.  The fabric of the world is somehow changed…God’s JOY swelling, awakening a few nearby shepherds to a new reality, prompting activity, movement, response.

Glimpses of baby, gently cradled, man and woman rapt and caught in love’s new meaning. Heaven sings.

Baby wrapped in swaddling clothes, bound tightly for his security in a strange new world, bound close so his limbs would grow straight.  Preparing him for this new life… little Lamb of God…

Visiting and visited.

There is another time later in life when he strips, naked as the day he was born…takes the towelling cloth and wraps it close around himself, preparing for the next great chapter… as he greets his friends, kneels before them gently tending to their wounded, scabby, dusty feet… washing them, feeding them bread and wine… singing with them, and setting them a new goal… to love one another in a really big way… and he walks into the shadows of the green Olive grove to embrace another reality.

And yet another time when, having given His all to the love of His father, and for the love of all people, he is lowered by sheets from the terrible tree.

He is wrapped once again -  in the swaddling bands of death… bathed and perfumed with spices… bound and covered, hidden in the tomb-womb’s darkness, mission-accomplished, life gifted, offered to the earth…

Then in an OMG moment of unbelievable power, blaze of angels, death overcome, stone moved, earth taken in love’s embrace into the fullness of God… the swaddling bands are left, folded, tomb redundant, Loving Lamb of God RAISED, Life restored, renewed in indescribable Spirit-life.  All is changed.

And it all began with God’s overshadowing, woman’s total gift of her self, man’s strong and loving obedience and a whole lot of trust…

At Cradle, Table and Tomb, we are bound to Him, by Holy Spirit bonds of love, drawn into Christ’s loving, challenging, costly adventure…   We worship and adore Him…  Glory to God in the Highest!

Jesus, the Saviour, is born.
Love, and God bless, this Christmas Day

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